Hi, this is Włodek, Wojtek and Iga, RST’s Product Design team.
Currently, we are looking for a new person to join the team. Since candidates often ask us similar questions, we thought it would be a good idea to tell you a bit more about our work. We decided to write a post offering insight into our daily work.
Let’s cut to the chase!
Who are we?
Over 180 specialists work in RST Software Masters. A large group of them work for a client from the transportation industry – Trans.eu. The remaining pool of our workforce, called “new business”, focuses on foreign start-ups and major Polish companies. Our team belongs to the second group. Our responsibilities include conducting workshops, research and designing and implementing products in accordance with the “product discovery” approach.
What is it like to work with start-ups (and other companies) at our software house?
Usually, working with start-ups begins after we have been presented a vision of a product during the initial briefing. At this stage, there is no documentation, user stories, nor a list of functionalities.
RST does not employ business or system analysts, so understanding the client requirements is the responsibility of the product design team. We are supported by project managers and technical architects, but cooperation starts with a discovery meeting with a client and our UX/UI designer.
What projects do we typically work on?
We work on a variety of products, both B2B and B2C, designing mobile, RWD or, at times, desktop interfaces.
The projects that we work on span across various sectors and markets: from a platform for office management in an era of hybrid work (UK), through ridesharing (USA), an app helping to waste less food (UK), to a platform and marketplace for managers and providers of cleaning services (Dubai). We also work for the financial (factoring, debt collection) and insurance industries.
What does the product process look like at our company?
With start-ups, the process is as follows: first, we run a workshop with a client and an RST team in order to establish the project requirements. In some projects we start from surveying the potential product users.
Our next step is research. We analyze the competition, existing data, documentation as well as technological and design trends. If we did not survey the potential users at the previous stage, then we might do it at this stage. It is also a moment for developing materials for potential experiments aimed at verifying the viability of a concept under development. For this purpose, we develop a landing page about a product or service.
Subsequently, we continue with workshops, consult our ideas with RST’s technological teams and draft lo-fi mock-ups that are often verified with users.
The next step is delivering a style guide and UI.
But it is far from “job done”.
Do we participate in implementing projects?
First and foremost, we want to see how a product works live and make sure that it is delivered in compliance with the goals and assumptions specified with the business. To achieve this, we become part of the scrum team. Cooperating closely with developers and testers, we work to deliver a valuable product.
Do we work exclusively on new products?
Our work does not consist exclusively of defining new products for start-ups. Some of our partners have been developing their products for a long time, optimizing conversion through discovering insights with the use of quantitative and qualitative methods (interviews, tests with users, product analysis, A/B tests).
We also develop our own products, such as AdminJS.
Which tools do we use in our daily work?
The most basic tool in our toolbox is (wait for it!) our minds! :) Apart from that, we use Figma, Slack, Jira, and a suite of software by Google.
What’s the maturity of design level at RST Software?
According to the typology applied in Adobe, we are an “Established” organization (We have a design process that works and design staff that do it). As far as moving to a higher level is concerned, i.e. becoming a “Differentiated” organization (We do top notch design and it is integral to our strategy), we lack a larger team (in terms of the processes and the approach to designing, we meet highest standards).
We believe we are doing very well, but nonetheless we strive to bring our culture and design awareness to a higher level – see some of our practices:
On the majority of products we work in groups of two and practice peer review (we embrace feedback, thus improving our skills and creating even better solutions for our clients),
We implement and apply proven standards optimizing our work (templates, check lists and best practices stemming from our knowledge and experience),
We have an internal UI Kit for Figma to create lo-fi mock-ups that we constantly develop,
We share knowledge with each other and within the organization in order to develop our competences in designing and better understand our role,
We constantly improve our competences, both domain and soft – we participate in trainings, conferences, learn English and expand our toolbox.
We are looking for a Product Designer – maybe it's you?
We are currently looking for a Product Designer to supplement our team. We believe we can teach you a lot (there are only seniors on board). If you want to know more, send us an e-mail and we would be happy to meet you online or live over a cup of coffee (our office is in Wrocław): firstname.lastname@example.org.